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Re: The Unofficial (and Very Simple) Lenny GR: call for votes

Sorry for the late reply, but I've been so frustrated with things over the 
past week that I decided to take a break and see how things worked out 

On Monday 15 December 2008, Adeodato Simó wrote:
> * Frans Pop [Mon, 15 Dec 2008 20:09:28 +0100]:
> > Because any votes below FD do not count toward quorum/majority. Of
> > course you can do all kinds of unofficial analysis on the outcome of
> > the vote to "correct" for that, but that does not actually change the
> > official outcome of the vote.
> You said, "The only effect of voting FD on the official vote is to play
> into the hands of those who don't want any firmware support in Debian."
> From that, I take that you mean, "if people rank FD first, option #1
> will win".

No, that is not what I meant. Voting FD high means that options requiring 
super-majority will be more likely to get dropped before remaining 
options are ranked. Thus promoting to vote for FD skews the total outcome 
of the vote.

Which option "wins" is not the only important outcome of this vote. It is 
equally important (especially because of the mess it is) to see how much 
support for example option 6 gets and for that option it would normally 
even be especially important to see how may people rank it above or below 
FD. This is something that we will now be unable to determine.

See also my mails to d-vote in response to the second CfV.

> I read these two paragraphs carefully, sat on them for a while, and I
> got what you mean: the poll does not give an option for people who were
> discontent, *not with the direction in which the tags were applied
> (leave firmware in Lenny), but with the tags being applied for these
> issues without consultation*.

Correct. And it is a point I, and others, have repeatedly made in the 
discussion on d-vote.

> Said that, I hope you'll reckon this wasn't done purposely, and that my
> mistake is understandable because I haven't seen much strong opposition
> to our usage of the tags by people who didn't opose to the direction of
> the tag as well.

Oh, I have no doubt of that, but it does affirm my objection to calling 
the poll: by the way it was constructed you never allowed the voters to 
test whether the total set of options reflected the opinions in the 
project, which is essential to the democratic process in our project.

> Would you really want (the certainty of) a GR for every time where the
> release team wants to use a <suite>-ignore tag for a licensing issue?

No. See also my "Request for ruling..." mail just sent to d-vote.

> One final thing: these two mails of you have brought a fair amount of
> stress on me, because of the way you say things. (Maybe you don't feel
> it's reasonable for me to feel stressed, but it's simply true that I
> was.)

Have you considered that the strength of my mails could well be a good 
indication of the level of stress _I_ had from your calling the poll, 
especially given my existing frustrations with the RT?

You may or may not have noticed, but I've been nowhere near as active for 
Debian as I have been in the past and I'm certainly nowhere near as 
motivated to work on Debian. And most of that is the direct result of 
frustration caused by how the RT has so far handled the Lenny release and 
Etch stable releases.
I have had a huge amount of fun working on the Sarge and Etch releases, 
but there has been a shift in how the RT operates and communicates with 
people contributing essential components of a release which has 
completely destroyed that for me.

My second mail was a lot stronger than the first one [1]. I've just read 
both again and to be honest I don't see any reason to retract any of the 
statements in them. I really do think that calling a poll in parallel to 
an official vote, especially when done by a member of the release team, 
is an unacceptable and inexcusable perversion of our democratic process 
as it _will_ influence both whether people vote and how they vote in the 
official vote.

Even the fact that you did so as an individual developer does not change 
the fact that you are a member of the release team and that that team 
does have a strong interest in the outcome of the vote. Persons holding 
an elected or delegated position in the project should IMO in general be 
more careful what they do than "regular" DDs.

Of course, you are free to disagree with and ignore my opinion.


P.S. Despite this disagreement you are still one of the two persons (the 
other being Phil) whose attitude and work as members of the current RT I 
most appreciate.

[1] Triggered for example by your offhand suggestion to just "take a walk" 
which I don't consider to be particularly nice.

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